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[mis-chans, -chahns] /mɪsˈtʃæns, -ˈtʃɑns/
a mishap or misfortune.
Origin of mischance
1250-1300; mis-1 + chance; replacing Middle English mescheance < Old French Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for mischance
Historical Examples
  • We can convey the intelligence of your mischance to her: the porter will befriend you.

    Calderon The Courtier Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • By some mischance, it had been left lying on the parlour floor, and become forgotten.

    Self-Help Samuel Smiles
  • Arriving in Damascus they both stay at the same Hotel: mischance second.

    The Book of Khalid Ameen Rihani
  • But, first of all, we must beware lest we meet with some mischance.

  • Now we have wept over our mischance, we will bury it and look to the future.

    An Orkney Maid Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr
  • The mischance was his own doing; let him find the remedy himself.

    Davenport Dunn, Volume 2 (of 2) Charles James Lever
  • Had she heard, by any mischance, that impertinent phrase by which I designated her?

    A Day's Ride Charles James Lever
  • It was a mischance, sir, but so far as I can see one that might have happened to anybody.

    Two Sides of the Face Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch
  • The Lion said to the Fox, "It is not thou who revilest me; but this mischance which has befallen me."

  • It was given to me, but by some mischance was lost or stolen.

British Dictionary definitions for mischance


bad luck
a stroke of bad luck
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for mischance

c.1300, from Old French mescheance "misfortune, mishap, accident; wickedness, malice," from Vulgar Latin *minuscadentiam; see mis- (2) + chance (n.). Now usually "bad luck;" formerly much stronger: "calamity, disaster."


1540s, from mis- (1) + chance (v.). Related: Mischanced; mischancing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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